The World Health Organization (WHO) reports availability of HIV medication for pregnant women in poorer countries increased in 2009. According to the study, more than 50% of pregnant women living with HIV gained access to HIV medications. Five years prior, only 15% of the same population received medications required to prevent passing of HIV from mother to infant during gestation or delivery. Populations most highly affected were of lower to middle income economic status. Total HIV+ pregnant women receiving treatment in 2009 - 5.25 million.

 The goal set forth by UNICEF and UNAIDS was an 80% treatment rate. Botswana, Cambodia, Croatia, Cuba, Guyana, Oman, Romania and Rwanda met that goal. Many countries include Ukraine and Namibia reported treatments provided to more than 80% of children living with the virus.

Despite the positive push toward HIV treatment in pregnant women, the number of people going without treatment remains high. Women are simply not aware treatment is available, have no transportation to treatment facilities or have no idea they are HIV+. It is estimated that less than 40% of people with HIV know they are positive.

The WHO has set very high standards for 2010 and beyond, but a $10 billion funding deficit looks to hamper HIV treatment and education efforts. Funding for the WHO HIV treatment programs has steadily declined due to economic unrest and poor economic outlook.

Source: Tunga Namjilsuren. World Health Organization – Geneva. 28 September, 2010.